Your House Is Listed For Sale But Isn't Selling: What to Do Next

Are you finding that your house just isn’t selling no matter how much effort you put into the marketing process? It’s possible that your home is simply overpriced, and in order to start seeing some genuine movement, you may need to list it at a more realistic price. 


Or, it could be that your home needs a bit of work done before it will be appealing to potential buyers. If this is the case, get started on those repairs and adjustments as soon as possible – every day that your home sits on the market without an offer is another day of lost potential profit. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to speed up the sale process – keep reading for more tips!



Your House Is Listed For Sale But Isn't Selling: What to Do Next

When a listing sits on the market for an extended period of time without any offers, it’s often referred to as being “stagnant.” A stagnant listing can be a result of one of many factors or even a combination of factors. When you have a stagnant listing, the market is telling you there is a problem with your listing. Here are some of the common factors that will lead to a stagnant listing:


Your House Needs A Deep Cleaning

If it’s been a while since you’ve given your home a good cleaning, it may be time to invest in a professional cleaning service. A clean house will show much better than one that potential buyers perceive as being dirty or neglected. Not only that, but a deep cleaning can also help to eliminate any bad smells that might be present.


Your Listing Has Poor or Amateur Photography

First impressions matter and the photos that potential buyers see of your home will play a big role in whether or not they decide to schedule a showing. If your listing photos are poor quality, dark, or just don’t show your home in its best light, it could be deterring buyers from even considering your property. Hiring a professional photographer to take new photos (or even just to edit your existing photos) can make a big difference in the number of showings you get.


The House Needs Too Many Repairs or Updates

If your home is in need of significant repairs or updates, it will likely be a harder sell than a home that is move-in ready. Buyers are often turned off by the idea of having to put a lot of money into repairs right after they move in, so if your home needs work, it’s important to be upfront about it in your listing. You may also want to consider offering a home warranty to help offset the cost of any repairs that might need to be made.


Understanding The Costs of A House That Isn't Selling

Owning a property that is just sitting on the market without much action has some costs that many people don’t consider. Most people think of their mortgage payment as the primary holding cost of a property that isn’t selling. However, there are many others and they can really start to add up when you really start listing out all the costs.


Pro-Rated Property Taxes

If you sell your home before the end of the year, you will most likely still be responsible for a pro-rated portion of your annual property taxes. This is because in Texas, we pay property taxes in arrears which means that this year we pay for last year’s taxes and next year we will pay for this year’s taxes. Therefore, if you close on your home in October, the new buyer will end up paying this year’s tax bill in February when it comes due.


Vacant House Maintenance or Routine Maintenance

If your home is vacant, you are still responsible for maintaining the property. This means paying for lawn care and any other routine maintenance that is required to keep the property in good condition. If you have a pool, this will also be an additional cost that you will need to consider. Properties that are left vacant for longer periods of time tend to require more frequent maintenance and oversight.


Surprise Repairs

Just because your home isn’t selling doesn’t mean that things can’t go wrong. If you have a problem with your HVAC system or your water heater goes out, you will still be responsible for paying to have these items repaired regardless of the fact that your home isn’t on the market.



If you have a mortgage on your property, you are required to maintain insurance coverage. However, the type of insurance that you are required to carry may be different if your home is vacant. Many mortgage companies require that you carry vacant dwelling insurance if your home is going to be left unoccupied for more than 30 days. This is because vacant houses tend to be riskier for insurance carriers.



In addition to paying for routine maintenance, you may also need to pay for occasional landscaping services such as tree trimming or power washing. Depending on the time of year you are selling, you might need to factor in a weekly watering schedule as well so your landscaping doesn’t die under the summer heat.


Possible Shift in the Real Estate Market

Of course, one of the biggest wild cards when selling a home is the real estate market itself. No one has a crystal ball and can say for certain where the market will be in six months or a year. Current events and politcal climates can affect real estate prices. Having the house on the market a little too long could subject you to a swing in real estate prices.


How To Fix A Stagnant Listing and Get it Sold Fast

There are a few things that you can do to help increase the interest in your home and get it sold. Now that you know what are the common reasons for a stagnant listing and what the true costs of having a listing that isn’t selling, you can take the right steps to correcting the issue.


Sell the Property Off-Market

The first solution is to sell the property off-market. An off-market sale is when you market and sell your property without it being listed on the MLS. Many people don’t realize that this is an option, but it can actually be a very effective way to get your home sold quickly.


Contacting a direct cash buyer or an investment company is a great way to get started with an off-market sale. These types of buyers are usually looking for properties that they can fix and flip or hold as a rental property. Because they are not working with a retail buyer, they are often more flexible on price and terms. This can make the selling process much easier and faster.


Upgrade Your Marketing Plan

If you are not interested in selling your property off-market, then you will need to take a look at your marketing plan. It’s possible that you are not getting enough exposure for your listing. This could be due to poor quality photos, bad curb appeal, or a lack of online presence. If the house is listed with a realtor, ask them what their strategy is. They should be able to provide you with a detailed marketing plan.


Set A Realistic Asking Price

Another common issue that can lead to a stagnant listing is an unrealistic asking price. If you are asking too much for your property, buyers will be turned off and will look elsewhere. It’s important to do your research and find out what similar properties in your area have sold for. You can also ask your realtor to do a comparative market analysis. This will help you to set a realistic price for your home.


Consider Renting the Property Out

If you are not in a hurry to sell your property, you might want to consider renting it out. This will help to offset some of the costs associated with owning a vacant property. You can list your property on websites like Airbnb or VRBO.  This can be a great way to make some extra money while you are waiting for the right buyer to come along.


Get A Cash Offer From A Professional Buyer

You’re stuck with a house that you don’t want and you don’t know what to do. You’ve tried listing it, but it’s been on the market for months and still hasn’t sold. 

It’s hard enough trying to sell your house in today’s market, but when it’s not selling it can be downright frustrating. You might feel like you’re doing something wrong or that there’s something wrong with your house. 

Capstone Homebuyers is here to help. We will buy your house no matter what condition it’s in and we will close on the day you choose. We take all of the stress out of the selling process so that you can move on with your life.

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